Coming as a surprise out of nowhere, Disney announced that, in collaboration with NetDragon, will release a new MMORPG for kids and teenagers, called Disney Fantasy Online. The MMO will be released next Spring (which means that it was under development for quite a while) and the two companies already consider it “the most highly anticipated game” of the season. We’ll see if this time Disney hits the jackpot and sticks to the game instead of shutting it down and leaving thousands of players behind.
Disney Fantasy Online will of course take place in a Disney-themed world with non-playing Disney character hosts such as Mickey and Friends preparing the newcomers for the adventures that lie ahead. So, yes, this sounds more like a fully featured MMO rather than a casual, simplistic to the bone game (or a social world like Second Life).
Among the features announced for the upcoming title, the most interesting seems to be the option to build our own Disney-themed castles and personalize them as we see fit. Except from that, we’ll have the classing features of a MMO: pets, leveling-up, team-play and all sorts of community activities, as well as customizable avatars and battles (probably no PvP though – it would be just too much to see a Pluto vs. Goofy fight).
There are no details yet if the Disney Fantasy Online is planned to be released outside China, but one thing is clear: NetDragon is up for some big things: the company also announced yesterday their Dungeon Keeper MMO project!